My second day in Florence, I was stumbling about my new surroundings with jet lag in my head and surprisingly, I saw a familiar face.
1st painting of the trip, the view from the window
I am really late in blog posting....I am going to start where I left off and add a few more as I get to it. This summer was a whirlwind of travel, house buying, Chicken Pox, and dachshund woes. There was a lot of change in a small space of time- a lot of "living".
My family and I went to Montefiascone in May for me to learn and enjoy a residency with Artegiro Contemporary Fine Art. Our hosts and friends, Damien and Renata Summo-O'Connell and their dear children, were gracious to help with settling us in and supporting the project.
Montefiascone is on a hill, a mountain. The weather changes often and quickly. Sometimes the clouds were far above you, and sometimes below you. The people of Montefiascone are justifiably proud of their town. We stayed right next to the Cathedral-the Cattedrale di Santa Margherita ( which has the 3rd largest dome in Italy) and just below the breathtaking view from the Rock of The Popes. This tiny town had Slow Food member eateries and a wonderful enoteca called "Volo di Vino".
Returning to Italy after a few years absence was exciting. I'm always surprised that my Italian (such as it is) hasn't shriveled completely in the meantime. I'm also surprised at how much pleasure I get from working on the language. I feel actually exhilarated when I am able to communicate successfully and build relationships- to understand and be understood! I was happy to trade the initial shock of being in a different country for the slower, comfortable feeling of returning "home" in a way. After living in Italy- part of me changed forever and not a day goes by that I don't think about it. I think everyone who has spent a decent amount of time in another country has that same feeling.
This little painting is just under 8x10in. and is painted near the center of town.
Outside Regula's stone studio
One of the definite highlights of the trip were all the wonderful people I met. The studio was out of a dream-complete with artists in and out and a talented sculptor owner-Adrianna. She gave me roses from her garden which I painted one rainy day.
Angelo, a photographer,
, took me on more than 1 memorable excursion, patiently hearing me out in Italian. Simone and Gabriele are the owners of Volo di Vino and a talented duo of taste and writing. Quinto gave us a book he's written about figures in a fresco in one of the ancient churches and enriched our experience. Not to mention sculptor, Regula Zwicky, who inspired me, Rosanna, who invited me to her home and took me landscape painting in a nut tree grove, and Renata, my dear host, who is always an inspiration and herself an aesthete and cultural artist.
Painting Yindi in the studio
The night view from my window
|La bella vita- the beautiful blend of fresh sunshine and kitchens, image courtesy of Artegiro on Facebook|
Hooray! I am so honored to be chosen as an Artist In Residency by Artegiro Contemporary ART Artegiro Website.
I have the opportunity to stay for a time in a country I love-Italy. I have the freedom to paint or draw what I wish. To experiment if I want to, and explore. Another exciting aspect is that my host and dear friend, Renata Summo-O'Connell, will arrange for me to meet art scholars or painters or craftspeople to talk with during my stay. At this point I'm looking forward to painting a little of everything subject-wise and experimenting with mediums a bit (I still don't know what I'm in love with), visiting art museums and eating:). I will be bringing some pieces back with me to the States, and plan on a slow food evening Open Studio linked with Artegiro to share the project with you. I also hope to be a good little blogger.
|Montefiascone-image courtesy of Artegiro on Facebook|